When Marlene Queens has to go home to Missouri to settle her aunt’s estate, she only plans to stay for a week. She never intends to run into her childhood sweetheart, get drawn back into the life of the town … or risk revealing the secret that she’s kept for years.
Can anything else go wrong? Marlene Queens goes home to Parness Springs, Missouri, to put her late Aunt Beth’s house on the market and settle the estate. But once she’s back home, Marlene suddenly finds herself in over her head. Her Aunt Ingrid grows more demanding by the day. Marlene discovers her childhood sweetheart is now the local vet and the town’s acting mayor. And when a group of citizens want to put up a statue in memory of Marlene’s father—the parent who always embarrassed her as a child—Marlene is unwillingly swept into a firestorm of controversy.
As one thing leads to another, Marlene sees her entire life being rearranged before her eyes. Parness Springs may never be the same. Marlene fears that the secret she’s kept for years may be revealed. Can God work a miracle so she can finally have the future she’s longed for?
I love Lori’s books and while I enjoyed this one, I found Marlene to be a frustrating character! The town is delightful, Joe Brewster and his son, Vic are men you would love to know. My frustration with Marlene stems from her secret, the fact she kept it for so long to the detriment of herself, her daughter and the one man in her life who has loved her as she is. Lori’s writing, as always, is strong and infused with humour and compassion. I am more than happy to recommend Simple Gifts ~ just be prepared to wish you could conjure up Marlene from the pages of the book and shake some sense in to her!